The birth of a child is not a completely new beginning but it changes everything. It is a revelation that transforms us. The baby existed before, but now we can see its face. In this case, the unique case of Jesus, it is the face that God turns towards us, and also the face that we turn towards God – the mystery of two natures.
When Jesus comes into the world, all things turn towards him. The star representing the heavens leads wise men towards the baby. The peoples of the earth flock towards the stable where he shows his face. Everyone wants to gaze into those eyes. Mary and Joseph are the privileged ones. They live in his presence, surrounded by his aura, full of his joy.
The child begins to cry. He needs us, as we need him. He gives a voice to the cry of the ages, the cry of the world itself—the people, the animals, the rivers, the mountains. He gives a voice to the cry of God, who calls us to return to him, across such a great distance, over which there is now a bridge. The cry of God has never been heard before. The long ages have been silent. The bridge begins with a cry of need, and it will end with a cry of rejoicing, as the peoples of the world enter their Holy City.
This essay originally appeared on All Things Made New.